- Western Cape
Saldanha, a beautiful seaside village, lies between the Berg River mouth and the town of Langebaan on the West Coast. The town is situated in the northern most point of Saldanha Bay, which is the largest natural port with the deepest water in the country.
This quaint harbor town, which bears some resemblance to a Greek Port, has plenty to offer visitors and is known for its scenic beauty and abundant sea life. It is part of the “Magnificent Seven” villages that make up the West Coast Peninsula and is home to a Naval training base and a whole fleet of fishing vessels, yachts and boats that add to the picturesque character of the town. As expected the area is awash with wonderful restaurants offering fresh seafood and a charming, relaxed atmosphere. Most restaurants are alfresco affairs on the beach, slow-paced and simply delicious!
Saldanha is a particularly popular spot for whale watching during the migration season and offers fishermen a vast selection of mussels, crayfish and line fish. The region surrounding Saldanha is largely unspoilt and a bird watchers paradise, home to an abundance of Seagulls, Cormorants, Cape Gannets and Terns. During August and mid-September, the area toward Sandveld is covered in wildflowers enhancing the natural beauty that surrounds the West Coast fishing villages.
Visitors can choose from accommodation that includes self-catering cottages, holiday apartments, Guesthouses or the Saldanha Protea Hotel.
Places to Visit
Things to do and see
- Cape Columbine Nature Reserve
- West Coast National Park
- West Coast Fossil Park
- Bird Island Nature Reserve
- North Head Lighthouse
- South Head Lighthouse
- Saldanha Nature Reserve Mountain Bike Trail
- Tietiesbaai Beach
- Hoedjieskop Hiking Trail
- Club Mykonos Casino
- Langebaan Golf Course
The area receives most of its rainfall between June and August.
Summer months, November to March will have average temperatures of between 15˚C and 27˚C.
Winter months, May to August will have average temperatures of between 7˚C and 17˚C.
There are daily domestic and international flights into Cape Town International Airport and Saldanha is approximately 145 km away via the R27. Car rental companies are located at the Airport.
The first European sea traders started arriving approximately 500 years ago, but there is evidence at the West Coast Fossil Park that man may have been present here about 117 000 years ago.
The Dutch explorer Van Spilbergen visited Saldanha Bay in 1601 and if it were not for the lack of fresh water, this otherwise excellent natural harbor could have become the major port along the south coast of Africa instead of Cape Town. The port has developed into a modern harbor due to the need to facilitate the export of iron ore from the Northern Cape. This also required the construction of a deep water jetty to accommodate the Capesize ore carriers.
Saldanha was mistakenly named after a Portuguese seaman who discovered Table Bay, Admiral Antonio de Saldanha. It is believed that he never travelled to the area himself.
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